“WE ALWAYS SAY THE NAPLES hidden community,” says Valerie Blauvelt, an painter who is the district’s marketing chairperson. “We’re looking to simply as a gem.” through the district, a commercial north of Pine Ridge Road and west of Airport-Pulling in North Naples, the gem might at first appear to be a bit unpolished. The gritty business district is home to a cement mixing plant, auto repair shops and roofing companies. You’re more apt to see pickup trucks than luxury cars in the parking lots.
But look again, and you’ll start to notice the art galleries and studios tucked into plazas along Shirley Street and J&C Boulevard, along with a sprinkling of art-related businesses. Most of the Naples Art District (NAD) member artists, now more than 90 strong, work in buildings along those two roads.